Nagpur: Despite growing calls for women empowerment in the higher education sector, the number of girl aspirants in the undergraduate engineering courses is going down. As per latest statistics by the All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE), their numbers have dropped by 12,000, from 36,250 in 2012-13 to 24,802 in 2016-17. However, the figures for this year were not made available.
It's well known fact that engineering courses, which were once much sought after, are being least preferred by the students, primarily due to shortage of jobs and exorbitant fees charged by the college. Latest statistics from the AICTE confirmed that fact both intake and number of aspirants have declined in last six years.

In academic year 2014-15, the intake rose to 1.70 lakh students across the state, which was reduced to 1.51 lakh in 2017-18. Even number of colleges reduced from 380 to 374 in the same period. A total of 97,462 students took admissions in the engineering and technology courses in 2014-15, which were reduced by over 9,000 to 88,388 last year, as per the AICTE.

Sources from the Directorate of Technical Education (DTE), the apex body for admissions to the professional courses in state attributed the trend of girls dropping out of engineering courses to fewer job opportunities. On other hand, there is surge in admissions to the pure science courses like BSc and also to popular ones like interior designing, fashion designing, and others. Girls from well to do families prefer foreign universities even for undergraduate programmes nowadays, they said.